Decline and Fall: the causes of group failure in cooperatively breeding meerkats

Christopher Duncan, Marta Manser & Tim Clutton-Brock
In many social vertebrates, variation in group persistence exerts an important effect on individual fitness and population demography. However, few studies have been able to investigate the failure of groups or the causes of the variation in their longevity. We use data from a long-term study of cooperatively breeding meerkats, Suricata suricatta, to investigate the different causes of group failure and the factors that drive these processes. Many newly formed groups failed within a year...
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